LA Times Writer Defends Hugo Chavez Closure Of TV Station

Although most media coverage of the closure of RCTV by the Hugo Chavez government in Venezuela has been somewhat bland, we now have an example of a journalist who actually supports the takeover of that long established television station. It is the former Associated Press reporter in Venezuela, Bart Jones, who wrote an approving article in today's Los Angeles Times, Hugo Chavez versus RCTV. Jones justifies the closing of that station by the Chavistas by claiming that it supported the 2002 coup against Chavez:

RCTV's most infamous effort to topple Chavez came during the April 11, 2002, coup attempt against him. For two days before the putsch, RCTV preempted regular programming and ran wall-to-wall coverage of a general strike aimed at ousting Chavez. A stream of commentators spewed nonstop vitriolic attacks against him — while permitting no response from the government.

Then RCTV ran nonstop ads encouraging people to attend a march on April 11 aimed at toppling Chavez and broadcast blanket coverage of the event. When the march ended in violence, RCTV and Globovision ran manipulated video blaming Chavez supporters for scores of deaths and injuries.

So there you have it. The "crime" of RCTV was its supposedly biased coverage. By the Bart Jones reasoning then ABC, NBC, CBS, and PBS should be shut down because of its biased coverage of the Bush Administration.  At least Jones was nice enough to give us a heads up about another impending station shutdown by Chavez:

Chavez's detractors got more ammunition Tuesday when the president included another opposition network, Globovision, among the "enemies of the homeland."

So for Bart Jones the closure of another television station in Venezuela doesn't so much represent another authoritarian act by Chavez but more "ammunition" for his detractors. Meanwhile the leftwing blogosphere is jubiliantly hailing this Chavez censorship. The Democratic Underground even has a discussion thread claiming that the 53 year old RCTV was nothing more than a "RW CIA operation mistakenly called a 'TV' station."  You can see their inner authoritarian by this sampling of their posts:

Personally I think just shutting it down was being WAY TO NICE! The "reporters" cough cough, should be THROWN IN PRISON FOR TREASON!

All you SELFISH GREEDY RW CRIMINALS can go right to HELL! GOD BLESS HUGO CHAVEZ!

RCTV brought this on theirselves and they deserve everything they get.

Fox is denying my freedom of speech by holding its broadcasting license. I demand that they respect my freedom of speech by turning it over to me.

You can read a larger selection of leftwing "Democratic" Underground quotes supporting the Chavez censorship at the DUmmie FUnnies.

P.J. Gladnick
P.J. Gladnick
P.J. Gladnick is a freelance writer and creator of the DUmmie FUnnies blog.